16 Biggest Cruise Ships in the World

Whether this is your first time to board a cruise ship or have been enjoying cruises for many years, you will be amazed at how big modern cruise ships have become. There’s a reason why they have grown bigger and bigger.

They have become so gigantic, not only to accommodate more passengers but more so to put in a lot of attractive extras like huge slides, water shows, entertainment centers, etc. Here are the 16 biggest cruise ships in the world.

  1. Symphony of the Seas 1,188 feet long and 215.5 feet wide (362 meters long and 65.68 meters wide)
  2. Harmony of the Seas1,188 feet long and 215 feet wide (362 meters long and 65.53 meters wide)
  3. Allure of the Seas 1,187 feet long and 215 feet wide (361.8 meters long and 65.53 meters wide)
  4. Oasis of the Seas 1,186.5 feet long and 215 feet wide (361.64 meters long and 65.53 meters wide)
  5. Anthem of the Seas 1,142 feet long and 136 feet wide (348 meters long and 41.45 meters wide)
  6. Quantum of the Seas 1,139 feet long and 136 feet wide (347.17 meters long and 41.45 meters wide)
  7. Ovation of the Seas 1,138 feet long and 136 feet wide (346.86 meters long and 41.45 meters wide)
  8. Queen Mary II 1,130 feet long and 148 feet wide (344.42 meters long and 45.11 meters wide)
  9. Independence of the Seas 1,112 feet long and 185 feet wide (338.94 meters long and 56.39 meters wide)
  10. Liberty of the Seas 1,112 feet long and 185 feet wide (338.94 meters long and 56.39 meters wide)
  11. Freedom of the Seas 1,112 feet long and 185 feet wide (338.94 meters long and 56.39 meters wide)
  12. Norwegian Joy 1,094 feet long and 136 feet wide (333.45 meters long and 41.45 meters wide)
  13. Britannia 1,083 feet long and 144 feet wide (330 meters long and 43.89 meters wide)
  14. The Norwegian Escape 1,069 feet long and 136 feet wide (325.83 meters long and 41.45 meters wide)
  15. Norwegian Breakaway 1,068 feet long and 169 feet wide (325.52 meters long and 51.51 meters wide)
  16. Norwegian Getaway 1,068 feet long and 169 feet wide (325.52 meters long and 51.51 meters wide)

This article will give you 16 cruise ships which hold the record of being the biggest in the world today. All of them are more than 1,000 feet or over 304.8 meters long. The two ships which boast of being the biggest are Symphony of the Seas and Harmony of the Seas. Both are 1,188 feet or 362 meters long. 

The third biggest, Allure of the Seas, is only 1 foot shorter, with a length of 1,187 feet or 361.80 meters. The smallest cruise ship on our list is the Norwegian Getaway, but it is still ginormous, stretching 1,069 feet or 325 meters long. 

These are only some of the ships that we will discuss in this article. Read on to learn more about the biggest cruise ships in the world and their details!

16 Biggest Cruise Ships in the World

1. Symphony of the Seas

Symphony of the Seas is a sister ship of Harmony of the Seas. It was also built in the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint Nazaire, France. This ship is operated by Royal Caribbean and was launched in 2010.

Its length is 1,187 feet or 362 meters and its width is 215.5 feet or 65.68 meters. Its gross tonnage is 228,081 tons and has a capacity of 6,680 passengers which are served by the ship’s 2,200 crews. 

2. Harmony of the Seas

Harmony of the seas is by far the biggest cruise ship in the world at 1,188 or 362 meters long. Its beam is 215 feet or 65.53 meters. The total weight of this ship is about 226,963 tons. It can accommodate 6,780 passengers. It’s not a ship, but a floating city!

It was built by STX France at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France and is owned and operated by Royal Caribbean. The ship was launched in 2016. 

Several of the cruise ships on this list, especially the biggest ones, are owned and operated by just one company – the Royal Caribbean. The company’s full name is Royal Caribbean Cruise Line which was established in Norway in 1968. RCCL is now based in the United States, in Miami, Florida. Royal Caribbean is the biggest cruise line in terms of revenue. In passenger counts, it is ranked as second.

3. Allure of the Seas

Allure of the Seas was built by Aker Finnyards in February 2006. Construction started in February 2008 at the construction site at the Perno shipyard, Turku, Finland. She is owned by Royal Caribbean and was launched in 2010.

With a length of 1,187 feet or 361.8 meters, it became the third biggest cruise ship in the world. Its beam is 215 feet therefore it is 65.53 meters wide. It can accommodate a maximum of 6,295 passengers. Its total weight is 225, 282 tons.

4. Oasis of the Seas

STX Europe Turku Shipyard, Finland built Oasis of the Seas. It is yet another of the biggest ships owned and operated by Royal Caribbean. The ship was launched in 2009 and has a gross tonnage of 225, 282 tons. It can accommodate 6,296 passengers. It is a little shorter than its sister ships because it was built earlier. The cruise ship is 1,186.5 feet long and 215 feet wide (361.64 meters long and 65.53 meters wide.

5. Anthem of the Seas

Anthem of the Seas is also owned and operated by Royal Caribbean. It is 1,142 feet or 348 meters long and 136 feet or 41.45 meters wide. It can serve a maximum of 4,905 passengers. Its gross tonnage is 168, 666 tons. 

6. Quantum of the Seas

Quantum of the Seas is another cruise ship that is owned and operated by Royal Caribbean. It went on its maiden voyage in 2014. The length of the ship is 1,139 feet or 347.17 meters and its width is 136 feet or 41.45 meters. It can accommodate 4,905 passengers and its gross tonnage is 168,666 tons. 

7. Ovation of the Seas

Ovation of the Seas is a huge cruise ship built by Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. It is also owned by Royal Caribbean. It is 1,138 feet long and 136 feet wide (346.86 meters long and 41.45 meters wide). The ship can serve a maximum of 4,905 passengers. Its total weight is 167,666 tons.

8. Queen Mary II

biggest cruise ship in the world

This is the first ship among the biggest cruises which is not owned by Royal Caribbean. Queen Mary II is owned and operated by Cunard. The ship made its maiden voyage in 2004. It is 1,130 feet or 344.2 meters long and is 148 feet or 45.11 meters wide. It can serve 3,090 passengers and it has a total weight of 148, 528 tons.

9. Independence of the Seas

The ninth biggest ship in the world is Independence of the Seas. It was also built by Aker Finnyards Turku Shipyard, in Finland and operated by Royal Caribbean. The ship went on its first cruise in 2008. Its maximum capacity is 4,375 passengers and its gross weight is 154,407 tons. The length of this ship is 1,112 feet or 338.94 meters and its width is 185 feet or 56.39 meters.

10. Liberty of the Seas

The 10th ship on our list of the world’s biggest cruises is Liberty of the Seas. This ship is also owned and operated by Royal Caribbean. It made its maiden voyage in 2007. This ship is 1,112 feet or 338.94 meters long. It is 185 feet or 56.39 meters wide. This ship can house a maximum of 4,960 passengers. Its gross weight is 160,000 tons.

11. Freedom of the Seas

Freedom of the seas earned the 11th spot on our list of the world’s biggest cruise ships. It has a total length of 1,112 feet or 338.94 meters with a total width of 185 feet or 56.39 meters. Its total weight is 154, 407 tons. The maximum capacity of this ship is 4,515 passengers.

12. Norwegian Joy

Number 12 on our list of the biggest cruise ships in the world goes to Norwegian Joy. This massive ship was built by the German shipbuilder Meyer Werft. It is operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. The overall length of this ship is 1,094 feet or 333.45 meters.

Its total width is 136 feet or 41.45 meters. It has a gross tonnage of 167,725 tons and it can accommodate a maximum of 3,883 passengers. Its total number of crew is also large, at 1,821 personnel.

Next to Royal Caribbean, the other company that owns the most number of the biggest ships in our list is Norwegian Cruise Line. It is also more popularly known as Norwegian or NCL. The company was established in 1966 in Norway but is now based also in the United States. Currently, NCL is ranked as the third-largest cruise line on earth in terms of passenger counts. 

13. Britannia

Brittania earns 13th place in our list of the world’s biggest cruise ships. It was built by Fincantieri, an Italian shipbuilder with facilities in Monfalcone, Italy. The total length of this ship is 1,083 feet or 330 meters and its total width is 144 feet or 43.89 meters.

Britannia can carry a maximum of 4,324 passengers. Its gross tonnage is 143,000 tons. This ship won the “Best New Ocean Ship” award given by the Cruise International Awards in 2015. It is Queen Elizabeth II herself who named this ship.

14. The Norwegian Escape

This large cruise ship was also built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany. It has an overall length of 1,069 feet or 325.83 meters and a total width of 136 feet or 41.45 meters. Its total tonnage is 164, 600 tons and it can house a total of 4,266 guests. 

15. Norwegian Breakaway

Norwegian Breakaway is another cruise ship that was built by Meyer Werft, in its shipyard at Papenburg, Germany. As the name suggests, Norwegian Cruise Lines is the owner and operator. It went on its maiden voyage in 2013.

The ship is 1,068 feet long and 169 feet wide (325.52 meters long and 51.51 meters wide). It can accommodate a total of 3,963 passengers. Its gross tonnage is 146,600 tons. The Breakaway has garnered many awards since its launch including Best Rookie Cruise Ship in 2013 and Best Cruise Ship for Families in 2015.

16. Norwegian Getaway

Norwegian Getaway has a total length of 1,068 feet or 325.52 meters and a total width of 169 feet or 51.51 meters. It was also built by Meyer Werft, in Papenburg, Germany. This ship is also owned and operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. It can house a maximum of 3,963 passengers. The ship’s total weight is 145, 655 tons.

Both Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Lines started their operations outside of the United States but both are now based in the US. RCCL and NCL control a majority of the cruise business in the world, with the former having a greater share of the pie with its greater number of cruise ships.  

Ever wonder why they build ships that are gigantic? It is not so much for their size, but these cruise liners would like to offer us more amenities and activities. The greater number and variety of attractions, the greater will be the size of the cruise ships. And we are the beneficiaries – as long as we can afford the rates that they charge.